It's estimated that each year in the United Kingdom nearly 4,000 people are diagnosed with mouth cancer. Unlike many other forms of cancer, the symptoms of mouth cancer are often hidden from view until it's too late.

That’s why it’s vital to know the potential signs so you can catch and treat them early on. So what does mouth cancer look like? And what are some things you can do to prevent it from developing?

In this guide, we’ll briefly discuss the answers to these questions. That way, you can prioritise your oral health while keeping yourself safe from this public health problem.

The Signs: What Does Mouth Cancer Look Like?

There are around three physical symptoms you should look for when checking for mouth cancer. The first is an ulcer in your mouth that’s been there for more than three weeks.

Mouth ulcer mouth cancer

Another common sign is patches that are either white or red in colour. Lastly, there might be lumps found in your lip, mouth, throat, or neck area. You should also look for signs of mouth cancer like difficulty swallowing and talking.

You may find that you’re losing weight without any effort. In some cases, you might notice pain around your mouth. However, it’s important to note that mouth cancer typically isn’t painful early on. So you definitely shouldn’t wait for pain to appear before you get properly screened.

How to Check for Mouth Cancer

Performing a self-examination to detect mouth cancer can be quite difficult compared to other types of cancer. Positioning bright lights and magnifying is challenging enough on its own.

On top of that, you often don’t know exactly what to look for. As such, it’s important to schedule regular screenings. The easiest way to do this is by going to the dentist for a hygiene appointment.

During these checkups, your dentist can perform a proper screening for potential mouth cancer. If they find anything, they can refer you to a professional for mouth cancer treatment.

How to Prevent Mouth Cancer

November is Mouth Cancer Action Month. In honour of it, we here at Bath Spa Dentistry want to spread awareness about some of the things that can cause mouth cancer.

That way, you can make lifestyle changes that can prevent it from happening to you. Perhaps the greatest contributor to mouth cancer is smoking tobacco. However, other causes of oral cancer include things like gum disease, excessive drinking, and HPV.

Smoking causes mouth cancer

So if you smoke and drink heavily, consider quitting one or both of them to help with preventing cancer. Regular dental visits can reduce the likelihood of gum disease and tooth decay, while an HPV vaccine can keep you safe from the health effects of this condition.

Schedule a Dental Appointment With Bath Spa Dentistry to Screen for Mouth Cancer

We hope this guide helped you answer the question, What does mouth cancer look like? Here at Bath Spa Dentistry, we’ve seen firsthand the devastation that mouth cancer can have on lives.

That’s why we provide screenings during all of our general dental exams. If we find something, we’ll walk you through the next appropriate steps for your situation. So if you’re ready for an unmatched standard of dental care, schedule your next appointment with us today.